Next gen Microsoft HoloLens could launch in 2019
Modern VR headsets are getting better by the year and prices have dropped considerably since the first commercial products got launched in 2016. Augmented reality also got a considerable boost with the launch of the Pokemon GO mobile game in 2016, but game developers are not yet sold on this type of tech. Even more so, the mixed reality technology hyped by Microsoft with its HoloLens is still nowhere near a wide commercial release due to the prohibitive price (US$3,000). Despite the slow adoption process, Microsoft appears to be ready to release an improved version in 2019, according to the latest leaks.
Brad Sams from Thurott.com reported last week that he was able to view official documents that present a Q1 2019 for the next gen HoloLens headset codenamed Sydney. The documents also describe the new HoloLens as being “lighter, more comfortable to wear, and hav[ing] significantly improved holographic displays.”
The Verge further claims that Microsoft would show prototypes of the new headset later this year, and the company is said to have started collaborating with Qualcomm,a s the upcoming HoloLens will be powered by an ARM-based processor that improves battery life. This will most likely turn out to be the XR1 chip announced by Qualcomm in May. Thus, the MSRP could significantly drop to sub-US$1,000 marks.
Now that the VR tech is mature enough, Microsoft should start to push adoption for its Mixed Reality platform sooner rather than later. Last year, Microsoft did release some VR-based devices, but the mixed reality part was still left out of the equation. The company surely must be already working with developers in order to have adequate mixed reality content for the Q1 2019 release of the new headset.